I received a copy of A CAST OF STONES by Patrick W. Carr from Bethany House, one of my favorite publishers. The book is the first in the Staff & the Sword series. While I love fantasy novels, this one didn’t quite do it for me. There is plenty for a fantasy lover to enjoy – magic, kingship, a quest. All were very cool and well thought out, but it just wasn’t a page turner. Many of the sentences seemed simplistic enough to be geared toward a children’s book, although the content was definitely adult, and the characters were older.
I would have liked to see more emotion in the story as well. Many of the sentences were more Telling than Showing, which is one of the writing tricks of the trade I’ve been lectured not to do. A sentence such as “Errol fumed” could have been made into something such as, “Errol clenched his fists until his broken fingernails stabbed his palms, while he gritted his teeth and narrowed his eyes.” Of course, it is up to the author how he or she wants to display the characters. For me, the lack of emotion kept me distanced from the story. It also didn’t have anything to make it stand out from other fantasy novels. Since I needed to review the story, I read it in a few days, but my mind kept wandering.
Nonetheless, I recommend this to fantasy lovers. It was overall entertaining and a quick read.